The other day I decided to see if I could find anywhere in Auckland that I could listen to some live country music. I pretty much came up empty.
There aren't any bars or clubs that specialise in country, although there are some that have country acts sometimes. Lone Star cafes play country music, but it's mostly old country that I don't really like very much. I have a couple of places to investigate, but basically I'm out of luck when it comes to modern country in Auckland. It was nice in Texas that you heard country music all over the place.
Part of my search led me to the music section of myspace, which actually seems fairly useful (which isn't saying that much when compared to my general opinion of myspace). The standard artist page has a few songs to listen to, lists of upcoming gigs, bios and links to buy albums. I poked around on there for a while and came across a few new US country artists that I've never heard of before.
One of those was Gary Allan, who was the singer in the music video I posted yesterday. His voice is fantastic, and I love his style. His music doesn't seem quite as manufactured as a lot of the bigger name artists, it seems a little bit more raw and real. Realism is the heart of country music after all.
I downloaded about half a dozen songs of his before I discovered that he was also damn sexy. While he is apparently sufficiently attractive to some people to watch the music video without sound, that's really not the best way to experience it. Unfortunately, the songs of his I like the most aren't posted on YouTube, but that video is a reasonable taste of his style. Here's another: